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Baseball Heads North to Take on America East rival Binghamton in Weekend Series
Max Himmelstein leads UMBC with six homeruns
BALTIMORE – After a 17-8 loss on the road at Delaware on Tuesday, the UMBC baseball team (7-22, 0-4 America East) continues its road swing with a trip to Upstate New York to take on conference rival Binghamton (10-14, 1-2 America East) this weekend for a three-game series. The three games will be played at NYSEG Stadium, home of the New York Mets’ AA affiliate, the Binghamton Mets. The two teams will clash twice on Saturday with the first game set for 12 p.m. and the second game scheduled to start approximately 30 minutes after the opener is finished. Sunday’s game slated for a 1 p.m. start time.
In the series opener, senior Steve Miller (Newark, Del./Dickinson) (0-5, 6.83) will oppose Binghamton righty Mike Augliera (2-4, 1.64). Miller has made one career appearance against the Bearcats, throwing one scoreless inning during last season’s series. His last time out, in the series opener against Maine, the veteran right-hander took the loss after giving up six runs on eight hits in 4.1 innings of work.
In game two sophomore Mac Gill (Bethesda, Md./Walter Johnson) (1-3, 4.80) will head to the mound to face Binghamton’s Jay Lynch (2-3, 6.28). In his first season with UMBC, Gill leads the squad in ERA and is second with 20 strikeouts. Last weekend he gave up 10 runs on 13 hits in 5.2 innings against Maine.
In Sunday’s finale, sophomore Shane Vlasic (Ashburn, Va./Broad Run) gets the ball for the Retrievers to go against Bearcat righty Jake Lambert (2-3, 5.58). Vlasic is 2-4 this season with a 6.39 ERA in a team-best 43.2 innings. He also leads the UMBC staff with 22 strikeouts.
Binghamton swept all three games last year at the Baseball Factory Field at UMBC and now leads the all-time series between the two schools, 28-3. The Bearcats claimed Saturday’s games 5-2 and 6-1 before coming back to claim the Sunday finale as well, 5-4, for their 15th straight win over the Retrievers.
Scouting the Retrievers
The Retrievers are 7-22 this season after falling to Delaware, 17-8, on Tuesday. Freshman Anthony Gatto (Hauppauge, N.Y./Smithtown West) went 3-for-4 with two runs scored in the loss for UMBC. The Black and Gold have now lost ten straight games.
A pair of seniors have led the Retriever offense this year with outfielder Brian Klukowicz (Clifton, N.J./St. Peter’s Prep) batting .394 (28-for-71) to go along with nine extra-base hits and 20 RBIs. Classmate Max Himmelstein (Moorestown, N.J./Moorestown) leads the team and is tied for the conference lead with six homeruns. He has also driven in 22 runs and scored 24 runs.
Freshman Ian Glassman (Basking, Ridge, N.J./Rutgers Prep) has earned a spot in the everyday lineup, batting .330 (35-for-106) with seven extra-base hits and 18 runs scored.
Scouting the Bearcats
Binghamton is 10-14 after defeating New York rival Cornell midweek and taking the series finale against Stony Brook on Sunday. Prior to their win against the Seawolves, the Bearcats had dropped five straight games.
Zach Blanden sets up the Bearcat offense and is batting .390 (23-for-59) with 12 runs scored. Jake Thomas has been Binghamton’s power threat so far with seven extra-base hits, including two homeruns, and a team-high 15 RBIs.
Despite his 2-4 record, Mike Augliera leads Binghamton starters with a 1.64 ERA and 37 strikeouts in 38.1 innings of work. Reliever Lee Sosa has shut down opponents, yielding just four hits and two runs in 8.2 innings this season.
- UMBC pitchers have recorded at least one strikeout in each game this season and have a 44-game streak dating back to Apr. 30, 2011.
- The Retrievers are 5-11 on the road this season, however this is their first game played above the Mason Dixon Line.
- UMBC is 1-3 against teams from New York this season. The Retrievers claimed the finale of a three-game set against Army in early March and fell to Buffalo back on March 14.
- UMBC has already scored five or more runs 11 times this season. Last year’s team scored five or more runs 17 times in 47 games.
- Gatto and Himmelstein are each batting .563 (9-for-16) when leading off an inning.
- Senior Curtis Schickner (East Windsor, N.J./Lawrenceville Prep) is hitting .429 (9-for-21) with runners in scoring position.
- The Retrievers are 4-2 when hitting one homerun in a game, but are 0-3 when hitting two or more in a single game.